Dr. Fauci Talks About All The Attention He’s Received In 2020, Says You Can’t ‘Start To Think You’re A Celebrity’

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Katie Jerkovich Entertainment Reporter
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Dr. Anthony Fauci opened up about all the attention he’s received during the pandemic and said that it shouldn’t be taken seriously and he shouldn’t start to think of himself as a “celebrity.”

“It’s surrealistic and, in some respects, nice and amusing,” the 79-year-old director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) shared with People magazine in a piece published Wednesday after being named one of its “People of the Year.”

“But you can’t take that stuff seriously and start to think you’re a celebrity,” he added. “When you start to think that, then you get into trouble.” (RELATED: Fauci Says He’s ‘Dying’ To See The Nationals ‘Play Again,’ But It Might Not Be In Person)


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Fauci continued, “I’m a physician. I’m a scientist. And I’m a public health official.”

Brad Pitt ended up playing the director for “Saturday Night Live” and items like bobbleheads, socks and more bearing an image of Fauci have been hot sellers as the coronavirus outbreak continues. (RELATED: HBO Working On Series About Dr. Fauci During Coronavirus Outbreak)

“I’m definitely not as good-looking as he is,” Fauci said of Pitt’s portrayal of him on “SNL.” “But I think he did a great job.”

At one point in the piece, the director also talked about “the most difficult and devastating infectious disease and respiratory outbreaks that we’ve experienced in the last 102 years.”

“You have a devastating public health challenge in the midst of a very divisive society, in a very hotly-contested political year,” Fauci shared. “You put all of those ingredients together and it’s been quite challenging.”